PASADENA, Calif. - The Caltech Women's Basketball program has announced its 2010-11 schedule, and it promises to be an exciting year for the Beavers. Coming off the best season in the program's history and bringing the most experienced women's team that Caltech has seen, the new slate presents opportunities to take Tech to the next level.
The Beavers open with a pair of games against La Sierra University (Riverside, Calif.; 0-22 in 2009-10). The Golden Eagles were one of three teams Caltech swept a year ago, but the arrival of a new coach and a revamped roster may give opening week for the Beavers a little spice to kick off the year.
Caltech next hosts Linfield College (McMinville, Ore.; 6-19), which presents a west region game outside of SCIAC play before the team heads into the annual Caltech-Occidental Thanksgiving Classic. This year, two teams from the east join the Beavers and Tigers for Turkey Day, as Dominican (River Forest, Ill.; 9-16) and Ohio Wesleyan (Delaware, Ohio; 20-7) come to town. Ohio Wesleyan is no stranger to postseason play, and has been a strong squad and nationally competitive program over the years. The Beavers will get a taste of the big time and what they need to work toward to make March more than a dream.
Caltech then joins forces with Claremont-Mudd-Scripps to host their annual Winter Classic, with two NAIA schools arriving in SoCal for games. The Keelhaulers of California State University Maritime (Vallejo, Calif.; 6-24) come south, while the Eagles of Southwestern College (Phoenix, Ariz.; 5-17) come west to compete. Regulars on the Caltech schedule, both teams have been staple opponents for the Beavs.
Before the winter term break gets into gear, the Beavers will hit the road bound for the City of Brotherly Love. With two games in Philadelphia, the team will be on the road for five days. While it is in snow country, Tech takes on Arcadia (Glenside, Pa.; 6-18) and the legendary Mighty Macs of Immaculata University (Immaculata, Pa.; 16-10.)
The Mighty Macs were crowned National Champions for the AIAW three times during the early 1970's and played a pivotal role in pioneering women's collegiate sports in this country. The 1974 title game was the first ever live coverage of a US women's basketball game. Student-athletes from those championship teams have gone on to become legends in coaching, including the 1992 Olympic coach Theresa Grentz. A documentary movie was made about the humble beginnings of this historical program and is set for release at some point in 2010.
Upon return from winter break, the Beavers meet up with two more sun-seeking teams before conference play begins. Marietta College (Marietta, Ohio; 3-22) arrives in Pasadena for one game, and then Chatham University (Pittsburgh, Pa.; 11-16) brings the New Year to Braun for the Beavers' last game before SCIAC play. It is Chatham's second trip to campus. Back in the '08-09 season, the Cougars came to town and took a solid victory from Tech. This is a chance for the Beavers to even the series.
The SCIAC timeline opens January 8 with a home game against Pomona Pitzer, a game that promises to be full of excitement. Last season, Caltech notched its first-ever sweep and first conference road victory against the Sagehens. Another SCIAC game to mark on the calendar is the February 12 matchup against the Poets of Whittier College. Saturday's game will celebrate the "Pink Zone", a WBCA national campaign for the fight against breast cancer. Caltech is one of the charter members to host the event. Finally, the regular season schedule will round out with a home game versus Occidental College on Senior Night. Two Tech seniors will be honored in their final game of their collegiate careers that evening.
All in all, the Beavers will see action in 14 of the 25 games this season in Braun Athletic Center, giving the Caltech fans plenty reasons to feel energized. Seven SCIAC teams, four other opponents from the west, and six east coast competitors set the stage for what could be the most exciting season yet. Caltech will fight for every inch, and the team hopes to see the stands full, the crowd excited, and the scoreboard in its favor!